Its A Little Like Golf

“Pompous Pear”
oil on linen on panel, 10″ x 8″
When I was learning to play golf, the ball went everywhere except where I aimed it. Years went by after playing a lot and I noticed I wasn’t in the trees as often . . or in trouble. Almost without noticing, those ‘lucky’ shots came much more frequently. As time took the years, I could almost predict where the ball would land . That IS the intent of the game; to be deliberate and thinking about where you put the ball and avoid obstacles and traps.

The same goes for painting. It isn’t as simple as hitting a ball, but one does subconsciously and gradually solve many of the awkward puzzles and challenges of the process. It really is about avoiding traps and obstacles. It is Waaaaaay more than technique. Deliberation and thought are the cornerstones to good painting. And, it’s also about those little teensy tiny realizations that if you do this, then that happens. (Just like golf.) Sometimes, all it takes is someone else’s comment to help us connect the dots suddenly. And, suddenly, the game takes on new meaning and direction. We actually win a few.

For example, I teach color theory and practice in watercolor. I KNOW that in most circumstances, as the light turns to shadow and a surface turns away from you, the color becomes cooler. I have several exercises in my classes about this! Yet, it wasn’t until three or four days after another painter said ‘that needs a cool back edge to help it turn away from you, that I suddenly went Oooohhh!!!! Fer goonesss sakes! I already knew that! Why didn’t I connect the dots ?!!
Now, if someone would just make a comment about my putting. (pleeeeze!!)

2 thoughts on “Its A Little Like Golf”

  1. Hi Mike,

    I really like this gem. Love the contrast of the smooth background against the brush strokes on the pear.
    The shadow anchors the pear and it’s diagonal composition, keeping me inside the painting.


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